When teenage prostitute Blue (Leila Mimmack) goes to meet new client Bill (Joseph Beattie) she doesn’t get what she expects. You see the Brighton flat that Bill is restoring was a notorious Victorian brothel. What’s more Bill has a mutoscope that contains images taken by the brothel owner and Blue discovers a secret ‘Sleeping Room’ behind a two-way mirror.
A second visit to Bill reveals more about the brothel’s past and how it is linked to Blue’s murky family history and the death of her mother. As Blue becomes obsessed with uncovering her family secrets, they come back to haunt her big time, as a monstrous supernatural force is unleashed in the house, baying for revenge. As if that isn’t bad enough her psycho pimp Freddie (David Sibley) is a bit upset with her for breaking the two visits per client rule, it’s not going to end well is it?
The Sleeping Room is apparently the first British Horror movie to be filmed in Brighton and director John Shackleton makes good use of the local landmarks like the pier and the seafront to provide a moody winter atmosphere. Most of the action takes place in the former brothel, a composite of Brighton’s Regency buildings, which nicely contains the supernatural action within a creepily dark and decayed environment.
For a low-budget Brit shocker The Sleeping Room delivers some pretty effective shocks through a combination of good acting, atmospheric camera work and lighting, tight film and sound editing and well tuned musical score by Paul Saunderson. It’s an intelligently written and nicely acted movie that will initially hook you in with a touch of intrigue and then reel you in to the terrifying conclusion.
Oh yeah it also has Hothouse pal Billy Chainsaw as the downstairs neighbour.
A wow at last year’s FrightFest The Sleeping Room is British supernatural film making at its very best I give it a 666/666
6th Sense a short about an estate agent (Julie Graham who plays Blues madame in The Sleeping Room) who discovers there is something more to a Brighton flat than a quick profit
Two Behind the scenes documentaries
FrightFest 2014 director John Shackleton in conversation with Billy Chainsaw